Violent Storms Kill 13 In Okla., Kan., Ark.

The Oklahoma Medical Examiner's office says at least eight people have died in severe storms that raked across the state.  Spokeswoman Cherokee Ballard said Wednesday morning that at least five people, including a young child, are dead in Canadian County, two are dead in Logan County and one in Grady County. All of the counties are located in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area.

Storms that blew through North Texas and generated funnel clouds have left thousands of people without electricity and a police officer hurt after being struck by lightning.  Early Wednesday Oncor reported more than 39,000 customers without power in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Utility spokeswoman Ashley Burton says crews made significant progress overnight, after nearly 70,000 customers lost electricity in Tuesday night's storms, accompanied by tornado warnings and hail the size of tennis balls.

Irving police say an officer was hospitalized in good condition Wednesday after being struck by lightning while placing flares in a road.

In Arkansas the chief deputy sheriff in Franklin County has confirmed a third fatality in a violent storm that struck western Arkansas. Deputy Devin Bramlett's announcement early Wednesday brings the tally of deaths from the storms that struck Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas overnight to 13.
Bramlett says one person died in the community of Etna. The other deaths took place in Denning in Franklin County and Bethlehem in Johnson County.  Two other deaths have been confirmed in Kansas.

All the storms came just two days after a massive tornado tore through the southwest Missouri town of Joplin and killed 122 people.